It seems like there has been a face-off between RSS and the Goa unit of the BJP over the grant of funds to English-medium primary schools in Goa.
A difference of opinion arose related to whether English should be promoted instead of Konkani and Marathi as the medium of education.
Goa CM Laxmikant Parsekar has decided to grant funds to English-medium primary schools, a move which has been backed by the BJP central leadership.
The 129 state English medium schools which were earlier under the Church and later converted to government schools will receive the grant. However, no new English medium schools will get benefit from this scheme.
The Sangh and the Bharatiya Bhasha Suraksha Manch (BBSM) want that primary education should be imparted in the mother tongue (Konkani or Marathi).
Reports suggest that they have even threatened to call on people to vote against the government in the 2017 assembly elections. RSS state chief Subhash Velingkar recently criticised the BJP-led government over the issue, appealing people “not to allow these people (BJP) on your doorstep during election”.
Wagh said in the last four months, people have begun to think and debate, and they’re now frustrated over the issue.
Krishna Raj Narsinh, Uttar Goa RSS sanchalak, said they have nothing against English-medium schools but the government grant must be given only to Konkani and Marathi schools.
The decision to continue to grant funds to these schools was originally taken by former Goa CM Manohar Parrikar. He had justified the decision saying, “We reiterate our stand that the mother-tongue will be the medium of instruction. Our stand will not change. But if I discontinue grants to the schools, we will have teachers from those schools who will be in surplus.”
With BBSM getting huge crowds for its public meetings, the ruling BJP has suddenly gone into panic mode, but the BJP however does not want to antagonise the Church, which holds 25 per cent Christian vote bank, without which the saffron brigade cannot come back to power.